When Is A Tent Not A Tent?


Cambridge dictionary defines a tent in very Kiwi camping terms:

A shelter made of cloth, which you can fold up and carry with you and which is supported by poles and ropes

So what is being talked about today as a temporary structure on Queens Wharf?
Probably a marquee, which Lions fans will know as :

A large tent used for eating and drinking in at events held mainly outside that involve a lot of people

The problem is - as is every part of this Monty Python-esque RWC 2011 Party Central shambles - now the word “tent” is out in the wild, every has a picture of something that should belong to the Orewa Camping Ground while we have John Cleese explaining to a Spanish waiter, a tent is not a tent.

It’s all getting very confusing - once again when it should be clear if only Auckland could speak with once clear sensible voice.

ARC Chair Mike Lee said tonight that the temporary structure the ARC and Government are looking at for Queens Wharf “certainly could not be a tent.”

A strong supporter of a cruise ship terminal but shouted down by other mayors, Mike Lee’s comments arrive at the end of a day of discussion about reports of “a 100-metre long tent being erected on the eastern side of the wharf” and the two 98-year old old decaying cargo sheds being demolished, which heritage people insist have to be kept.

Mr Lee says he still believes Auckland could have had a permanent, multi-purpose structure on Queens Wharf in time for the cup.

He says the ARC and Government are only looking now at temporary options for Queens Wharf because current Auckland mayors “had a collective failure of leadership.”

Well, to be honest, all this shambles suggests is that we actually need to hurry up with Rodney Hide’s less fragmented local government structure!

Mr Lee explains that the temporary structure will need to “act as the official Rugby World Cup fan zone, information and meeting place, and include a media lounge.”

“It will also need to cater for the two cruise ships that will be berthed at Queens Wharf for the duration of the cup.”

Mr Lee says the “brand new multi-purpose facility he had pushed for – but had been rejected by others mayors- would have given Auckland the cruise ship terminal it desperately needs, and a place for shows and events. It would have provided people with a great waterside venue for meeting friends, shopping, and just enjoying the harbour.”

Mr Lee said the temporary options needed to be discussed with the Auckland Regional Council and Government – the owners of the wharf – before a decision was made. “We expect to be able to announce our decision before the end of the month.”

“While these people will be here mainly for the rugby, they will also be looking for other entertainment and the chance to enjoy the harbour. “

“The positive economic impact of these visitors will be significant.”

Auckland's unfriendly red-fenced off Waterfront wharf area

Earlier, Labour says the idea to “pitch a tent” on Queens Wharf shows the government is “all over the place” on the plans for RWC 2011 Party central on the wharf.

The party’s Auckland issues spokesperson, Phil Twyford says the tent idea means the Government has missed a unique opportunity to develop Auckland’s Queens Wharf into a showcasing venue.

The Labour MP says the Government is” fooling around wasting time, going from one half baked scheme to another.

Auckland Mayor John Banks wants “a sensible outcome” for the planned Queens Wharf RWC 2011 “Party Central.”

He remains “willing to work with the Government to develop this.”

Whatever “this” is.




  1. GAZZA says:

    When its a Bouncy Castle!?

  2. Andrew says:

    New home for the old Supertop / Boiler Room?

  3. max says:

    As an aside, I always found the red fence kinda cool, rather than unfriendly.

    Even though I was once electrocuted while pushing my camera through the bars, not noticing the electric fence 30cm behind it, lol!

  4. Jeremy Harris says:

    That sounds like a good company slogan Max:
    Ports of Auckland: electrocuting fans for over a hundred years…

  5. LucyJH says:

    I reckon it’d be cool to have a trailer park. John Key could welcome influential visitors to NZ in his pimped up to the max caravan.

  6. Andrew says:

    Electrocution = death by electric shock.

    Max, are you dead?

  7. Sam F says:

    “Max, are you dead?”

    I think you’ll find the acceptable term these days is ‘differently alive’. Zombies are people too.

  8. Anthony says:

    I think it’s a fine idea.

    I would rather that money went into a CBD rail system.


  9. jarbury says:

    The red fence is a scheduled Category A item in the Auckland City District Plan. It cannot be removed.


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